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  Editorial Issue 81, January 2010   
Is It All Wine's Fault?Is It All Wine's Fault?  Contents 
Issue 80, December 2009 Follow DiWineTaste on Follow DiWineTaste on TwitterIssue 82, February 2010

Is It All Wine's Fault?


 In the last months, for many months, they told us the main cause for car accidents in Italy was the abuse of alcohol and the consumption of alcoholic beverages, including wine. They told us most of drivers - mainly of young age - had the bad and deplorable habit, before driving a car, to exaggerate with alcoholic beverages therefore taking the high risk of being cause of tragic accidents, involving the life of others, guilty of being at the wrong time in the wrong place. They told us it was good not to drive any car or vehicle after having consumed - although it would be better saying, after having stupidly abused - alcoholic beverages, an advise, of course, we completely agree. The thing they did not tell us is the main cause for car accidents in Italy is not associated to the consumption of alcoholic beverages.


 

 The result of this campaign for the awareness of wise and responsible consumption of alcoholic beverages - of course, completely agreeable and supportable - is today the common opinion that most of the people think car accidents are mainly caused by the consumption of alcoholic beverages or drugs. Today they tell us this is not the case. Once again, we want to be clear on this subject in order not to be misunderstood: the abuse of alcoholic beverages, including the use of drugs, it is something we do not agree and certainly deplore, even less, driving a vehicle after having exaggerated with substances like these. To make things clear on this subject, a recent research done by Piepoli Institute having the title “Perception and Reality: the Real Causes of Car Accidents”, a research commissioned by FIPE (The Italian Federation of Public Houses). The research analyzed the perception of people about the cause of car accidents, by comparing it with the real causes. The results are interesting and - it should be said - it does not however authorize or justify anyone to abuse alcoholic beverages and drugs before driving any vehicle.

 The research has compared the perception of Italians about the causes responsible for car accidents and the result is a big distortion, so far away from reality. According to the people, the main cause for car accidents is to be associated to the consumption of alcohol, whereas the real facts tell it is one of the marginal ones, about 3%. This is the result of a campaign that for at least two years has literally created a distortion of reality, by making people believe driving in a drunkenness state was the main cause of mortal car accidents, whereas in reality it is one of the most marginal ones. Asking people what are the two alcoholic beverages mainly responsible for car accidents, 79% believe they are spirits, 29% cocktails, 18% beer, 11% alcoholic soft-drinks and 10% wine. The “comforting” things of this study it is wine is not believed to be one of the main beverages responsible for car accidents, mainly because of the culture it expresses in Italy and probably also for the image of a beverage for the “élite” wine has gained in the last years.

 What is the main cause for car accidents in Italy? According to the research done by Piepoli Institute, the main cause is to the associated to the breaking of rules concerning road signs and wrong behaviors, a cause reaching 90%. According to the research done by Piepoli Institute, from 1997 to 2007 the number of deaths caused by car accidents has decreased of 24%, a decrease mainly determined by the introduction of driver license point system and the increase of fine tariffs. It should however be considered up to June 2003 the number of deaths caused by car accidents was constantly increasing. It is interesting to analyze this figure in relation to the introduction in 2007 with the prohibition of selling alcoholic beverages after 2:00AM. The figures concerning 2008 have resulted in a drop of 7,8% less than 2007 and even less if compared to previous years, when this law was not in force. This figure confirms - once again - most of the times prohibition does not bring to useful results.

 The result of this important research does not justify or encourage anyone to abuse of alcoholic beverages or drugs - whoever truly loving wine and life knows the pleasure and appreciation is mainly through moderation - and it must not create a distorted perception on the use of alcoholic beverages before driving any vehicle. It is appropriate to remember - for the sake of truth - car accidents caused by young subjects and being in the condition of having abused of alcoholic beverages or drugs, are the ones having the most tragic consequences. According to people, some laws issued by mayors in some cities forcing the anticipated closing of bars and the prohibition of selling alcoholic beverages after a certain time of the night, are considered to be scarcely useful for prevention. These measures have been judged by most of people as “scarcely useful” and even “hypocrite”.

 The result of the research done by Piepoli Institute also highlights a preoccupying aspect, something even irritating. In a subject so delicate and serious like car accidents, it is unacceptable mass media and Institutions have worked in such a superficial way, by even spreading false and distorted information, by making people believe as “preoccupying” and “primary” a cause which in reality represents about 3%. This, besides being extremely bad and wrong, strongly denies dignity of people by manipulating the truth, a factor which should be considered as fundamental in every country which is believed to be civilized. Maybe it is the “same old superficial Italian way”: let's take a cause, the first one coming to mind - or the most convenient one - and on that let's make the people concentrate on. Dear sirs, truth is important: it makes us and you all believable and - last but not the least - it makes you all honest, mature and serious. This is also reached with respect because no one is stupid and no one deserves to the treated as a bad and stupid kid. Finally, an appeal to all the real lovers of the beverage of Bacchus: let's show “this people” our culture is also made of responsibility and moderation. Real and true values based on a culture. Let's not sink them in a glass.

 




   Share this article     Summary of Editorial column Wine Tasting 
  Editorial Issue 81, January 2010   
Is It All Wine's Fault?Is It All Wine's Fault?  Contents 
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